An Open Letter to Derek O’Brien

Dear Derek O’Brien,

Your state of West Bengal, fondly called as the land of Bhadraloks, is now that of hooligans and gundas. The value of human life is diminishing by the day in your state. Political violence has become a commonplace in Bengal and the soil of the state is drenched in the blood of innocent people.

As many as 25 people have lost their lives and dozens of others have been injured so far in the ongoing panchayat elections. The perpetrators are alleged to be gundas of your very own party, Trinamool Congress. Violence inflicted by these gundas exposes the party’s insecurity. Your party knows that until and unless coercion is used, nobody is going to vote for it. Hence your party resorting to violence to bully the voters to submit. These gundas have wrecked havoc in the state. They have used every form of political violence imaginable, from murders to bombings, and booth-capturing to lynching.

At Kultali in South 24 Parganas, one person was killed when a bomb was hurled outside a polling station. A BJP worker was shot dead near a polling booth in Murshidabad. Ballot boxes were looted at gunpoint by unidentified people at 44, 45 and 45K booths in the same place. A student was shot dead at Nadia’s Shantipur during a booth capturing attempt for your party, Trinamool congress.

There is no end to this violence. Almost everyday new incidents like these surface. Shockingly, you have the audacity to justify this death and destruction using whataboutery. Have you sold your soul to the devil? If you don’t know, I am talking about the recent tweet that you made with regards to these incidents.

You said that there was much more violence during the CPI(M) rule, and because only a few dozen incidents have taken place now, so the violence is “closer to normal.”

Like, seriously?

Is shooting people of the opposition party in the head normal? Is bombing polling booths normal? Is stealing ballot boxes at gunpoint normal? Is capturing polling booths normal?
Well, all of these things would be normal in radical Islamic hellholes like Syria, Palestine, Pakistan or Bangladesh. But I guess, that is exactly what you and your Mamata Didi want West Bengal to be, and have achieved quite a bit of success in doing that.

Moreover why do you think that a few dozen incidents aren’t enough? How many incidents of massacre, rape and pillage do you want to witness before you realise that its enough? I reiterate, do you want Bengal to become a full-fledged war zone like Syria or Iraq or the Bangladesh of 1971 before you proclaim that something is wrong in Bengal?

I am really apalled by your apathy towards the prevailing anarchy sponsored by your own party in your state. But you aren’t just apathetic and stone hearted, but also a hypocrite.

Back in 2016, when the demonetisation happened, you were one of those who shed crocodile tears over the deaths allegedly caused by demonetisation. You tweeted a list of hundred such deaths. Using your reasoning, don’t you think that 100 odd deaths in a country of 130+ crore people, insignificant? In your own words, “what percentage is 100 out of 130 crore?”

Furthermore, maybe you don’t know this, “correlation does not mean causation.” If two incident occurred simultaneously, this doesn’t mean that one caused the other. This applies to a lot many cases of death during the period of demonetisation. They were merely coincidental.

For instance, a 96-year-old man in Udupi, Karnataka who died allegedly waiting in a long queue in a bank. But the man’s son says his father’s death had nothing to do with waiting in queue at the bank.

In another instance, an elderly woman in Kanpur died apparently counting currency notes. But, it turns out that she was reading a newspaper when she died, will you blame the newspaper for her death?

A businessman in Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh allegedly died from a heart attack after watching PM Modi’s announcement of demonitisation. As OpIndia puts it, “So for example, if he were watching Star Wars, would we blame Darth Vader for his death?”

Anyway, you were shedding crocodile tears on these deaths and your moral inconsistency proves that. Your concern was never about the deaths, but about who was allegedly responsible for them, that is, Modi and BJP. For you, some deaths are more equal than others. A death only matters when it can be politicised. But, when your party is responsible, deaths are nothing more than mere percentages. You are a shrewd opportunist who grabs every opportunity to politicise deaths, which you did in the case of demonetisation.

There you found an opportunity to blame the ruling party for the alleged massacre it did in the name of demonetisation, so that your party could spin a false narrative of rising Hindutva authoritarianism in the country. This fear mongering was a futile attempt by you and your party, because it failed miserably. In the very first election after demonetisation, which was in Uttar Pradesh, BJP savoured a huge victory.

Lastly, if you have even an ounce of humanity and shame left in you, then rise above the petty opportunistic politics which reduces injustices suffered by innocent people and deaths to mere percentages.

Thank you,
A Proud Indian

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SatyaVijayi